Trevor Noah is heartbroken after watching the dash cam footage of 32-year-old black man Philando Castile being shot by Officer Jeronimo Yanez, who was acquitted of any charges this week in what Noah called a "truly depressing" verdict.
"It's one thing to have the system against you—the district attorneys, the police unions, the court. That's one thing," Noah said on "The Daily Show" Wednesday night. "But when a jury of your peers, your community, sees this evidence and decides that even this is self-defense, that is truly depressing. Because what they're basically saying is, 'In America, it is officially reasonable to be afraid of a person just because they are black.'"
"You see so many of these videos, and you start to get numb," Noah said. "But this one? Seeing the child. That little girl. Getting out of the car after watching a man get killed. It broke my heart into little pieces."
"Forget race,” Noah said. “Are we all watching the same video? The video where a law-abiding man followed the officer's instructions to the letter of the law and was killed regardless? People watched that video and then voted to acquit?"
When police shootings of American citizens began to get more media attention in recent years, people initially demanded all officers wear body cams so that, in theory, justice could be served in court. But the verdict in the Castile case suggests even video doesn't seem to work.
“Black people have already taken that initiative, right?” Noah said. “Thanks to cell phones, every black person has a body cam now. Black people have been saying for years, 'Just give us an indictment. Just an indictment. Just get us in front of a jury. Just in front of a jury of our peers. Of our fellow citizens. We'll show them the video, the evidence, and they will see it, and justice will be served.' And black people finally get there, and it's like, 'Wait, what? Nothing?'"
Noah also noted the dash cam video wasn't the only video the jury watched during the trial, and then he played part of the infamous Facebook video of Castile's girlfriend telling the officer, "You shot four bullets into him, sir."
"It's f-cking mind blowing that Diamond Reynolds has just seen her boyfriend shot in front of her," Noah said. "She still has the presence of mind to be deferential to the policeman. In that moment, the cop has panicked, but clearly black people never forget their training."
Noah concluded addressing the jury that acquitted officer Yanez's who claims his reason for shooting Castile was in fear for his own life. "Let's be honest. Why? Why would you say he was afraid? Was it because Philando Castile was being polite? Was it because he was following the officer's instructions? Was it because he was in the car with his family? Or was it because Philando Castile was black?"